EASTCHESTER, N.Y. – It started out as rumors and whispers, but when the dust finally settled, Democrat Michael Denning decided to throw his hat into the political ring, and Eastchester has its first challenging candidate for town supervisor in a decade.
Since winning office in a three-headed race 10 years ago, Supervisor Anthony Colavita has run unopposed during his last four elections. This year, for the first time in a long time, Denning will provide residents the chance to vote to put a Democrat on the otherwise all-Republican board.
The former Eastchester and Westchester County police officer had entertained thoughts about challenging longtime Supervisor Anthony Colavita, but it took the urging of some of his colleagues to get him to dive in headfirst.
“I thought the town needed a little change. It’s time for some new blood. I was encouraged by some former co-workers, who then started a rumor that I was running, and that really snowballed,” he said. “It would be good to get a different party on the board to give us a different view for the town.”
Although this is his first foray into formal politics, Denning has a vast experience from his work with the police. As a 20-year veteran of the force, he has been involved in several different fraternal organizations, something he referred to as “a form of politics.”
Denning said that while his competitor has a lengthy political resume, everyone has to start somewhere, and this is where he has chosen to start. Whether he wins or loses on Tuesday, he plans to continue his political career moving forward.
“The biggest challenge I’ll face is being a newcomer and getting used to working in and with a government he said. “My opponent keeps saying he has 16 years of experience, and I’m hoping I’ll have that one day too. We all had to start somewhere.”
According to Denning, what he may lack in formal political training he makes up for in career and life experience. During his two decades as a police officer, he has been responsible for the living, the dead and everyone in between.
“As a police officer, I was involved in every facet of life. I helped deliver babies and I helped carry the dead. I deal with people every day, in all facets of life,” he said. “Whether we were locking someone up, or helping someone out, we were there to help the people. I enjoy helping people, and through politics, I’ll continue to help the people.”